Here's Why Mortgage Debt Doesn't Stress Me Out

by Maurie Backman | Updated July 19, 2021 - First published on May 4, 2021

Many or all of the products here are from our partners that pay us a commission. It’s how we make money. But our editorial integrity ensures our experts’ opinions aren’t influenced by compensation. Terms may apply to offers listed on this page.
A couple has a business meeting with their financial advisor in the office.

Image source: Getty Images

I don't like owing money, but my mortgage debt doesn't bother me.

Some people don't mind being in debt, but I'm not one of them. Having debt hanging over my head has always really bothered me. In fact, the idea disturbs me so much that I've made sure to never carry a credit card balance.

But there's one type of debt I have that actually doesn't worry me at all -- my mortgage. Here's why I don't find mortgage debt bothersome.

1. It's a healthy type of debt

Too much credit card debt can damage your credit score, even if you make your minimum monthly payments in a timely manner. Mortgage debt, on the other hand, doesn't hurt your credit score as long as you make your payments when you're supposed to. Knowing that, I don't get stressed about this type of debt. In fact, through the years, I'd say my mortgage has actually helped my credit score.

2. It's getting me closer to owning a large asset

By paying off my mortgage, I'm working toward an important goal -- owning a significant asset that has the potential to increase in value over time. Other types of debt don't offer the same benefit. In the past, I've taken out auto loans to finance cars, and while paying them off felt good, it's hard to overlook the fact that vehicles decrease in value over time. But homes are more likely to appreciate in value, so it's easy for me to feel good about paying for one.

3. I've kept my mortgage affordable

Back when my husband and I bought our home, we made the decision to stay well below the top end of our price range. That was over 10 years ago. Thankfully, since that time, our income has increased -- yet we haven't moved because we like having a mortgage payment that fits easily into our budget. Of course, we'd love it if our mortgage payment were to magically go away. But by being conservative with our home purchase and making a larger down payment, our mortgage doesn't strain our income.

A lot of people carry debt as a matter of course, but remember, not all debt is created equal. Mortgage debt can be healthy provided you don't take on more than your income can handle. If you're not sure how much house you can afford, use a mortgage calculator to run some numbers. Keep in mind that your predictable housing costs -- including your mortgage payment, property taxes, and homeowners insurance -- should ideally not exceed 30% of your take-home pay.

You may end up having to pay off your home over a very long period of time, so it's important that your mortgage not stress you out. And if yours is already a source of anxiety, you may want to look at refinancing, as doing so could lower your monthly payments and ease some of that burden.

The Ascent's Best Mortgage Lender of 2022

Mortgage rates are at their highest level in years — and expected to keep rising. It is more important than ever to check your rates with multiple lenders to secure the best rate possible while minimizing fees. Even a small difference in your rate could shave hundreds off your monthly payment.

That is where Better Mortgage comes in.

You can get pre-approved in as little as 3 minutes, with no hard credit check, and lock your rate at any time. Another plus? They don’t charge origination or lender fees (which can be as high as 2% of the loan amount for some lenders).

Read our free review

About the Author